PAST Act Reintroduced into U.S. House

The bill would amend the Horse Protection Act to ban performance packages and stiffen soring penalties.

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Legislation that would amend the Horse Protection Act of 1970 (HPA) to ban performance packages and stiffen penalties to those who sore Tennessee Walking Horses and other gaited equids has been reintroduced into the U.S. House of Representatives.

Soring—which the HPA forbids—is the deliberate injury to a horse’s feet and legs to achieve an exaggerated, high-stepping, so-called “big lick” gait.

In 2013, Representative Ed Whitfield (R-KY) introduced the Prevent All Soring Tactics (PAST) Act, which would have amended the HPA to forbid trainers from using action devices and performance packages. It also would have increased federal penalties for anyone who sored a horse and would have required the USDA to assign a licensed inspector if a Tennessee Walking Horse show management indicated its intent to hire one.

Shortly thereafter, Senators Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) and Mark Warner (D-VA) introduced identical legislation into the U.S. Senate. However, both bills died in Congress

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Written by:

Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny.

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